Thursday, September 22, 2011

Cleaning Step 3: Cleaning the House

Cleaning naturally is no harder then cleaning with chemicals. It is a very simple process and quite quick once you get the hang of it. Plus because you are not using any harsh chemicals you can let any member of your family help out. Since my kids could walk they have been given an area to clean and a wash cloth with a vinegar solution on it. I know they can put the cloth in their mouth or on any surface and I do not worry about harmful effect. Peace of mind could be the best reason to switch to natural cleaning. 

Here is a rundown on how we clean.
General- for most surfaces a simple wipe down with the vinegar solution works great. For any spots that do not easily come up sprinkle with baking soda and scrub then wipe with a cloth and vinegar solution.
Sink and Tubs -For tough stains use a baking soda and water paste and the scrub brush.
Glass and mirrors - spray water on the glass them wipe with the glass cloth. A little extra scrubbing might be needed for tough spots. If you see a streak re-wipe with the cloth.
Toilets - sprinkle baking soda then spray with the vinegar solution let sit for 5-10 min than scrub and flush
Drains -pour in some baking soda and then some of the vinegar solution let sit for a few minutes then run some hot water. To deodorize cut a lemon in to slices and run through the disposal. 
Oven- sprinkle baking soda in the bottom of the oven, spray it with water until very damp, re-wet occasionally, let it sit overnight. Wipe clean in the morning.
Tile Floors -sweep or vacuum then wet the microfiber mop head with the vinegar solution. For tough spots sprinkle with baking soda and scrub with the mop head or a brush.
Carpets -use warm water and a rag right away on spills then use baking soda to pull up any left over liquid and then vacuum when it dries.
To Sanitize Surfaces-  wipe surfaces clean with vinegar then spray with hydrogen peroxide. After a 1-2 minutes wipe away any remaining moisture with a dry cloth.

Soap Scum- soak the affected area in vinegar then wash clean. For tough scum mix 1 tablespoon borax with ½ teaspoon of liquid soap and 2 cups hot water. Spray and wipe clean.
Hard Water Scale- mix ¼ cup white distilled vinegar or lemon juice, ½ teaspoon liquid soap, and ¾ cap of hot water. Spray the area and let sit for a few minutes the rinse. Wash shower curtains as normal plus add a cup of vinegar with the detergent.
Rust Stains- mix 1 tablespoon cream of tarter and enough hydrogen peroxide to make a paste. Cover the stain and let sit for several hours.
Mold and Mildew- mix 2 tablespoons tea tree oil with 2 cups of water, spray on affected area and let sit for half and hour then wipe clean. Or spray the area with vinegar then immediately spray with hydrogen peroxide.

For store bought products I am very happy with the seventh generation line. These products are good for the environment and work well. If you are interested in learning more about not only cleaning but all things green sign up for the weekly Seventh Generation Newsletter here.

For more information and tips on how to clean naturally follow the links below

If you are still in doubt about how to clean a certain area of your home do a web search for “natural cleaning” and whatever it is you want to clean. You are guaranteed to find a wealth of knowledge and information.
 If you are still unsure about weather natural cleaning is the right way to go look it up for yourself. I can not say it enough you are your best advocate. Don’t just sit there believing all those adds and high priced commercials do a bit of research yourself. No one is going to take care of you better then yourself, and if you are raising a family like I am, absolutely no one is going to look out for the health and safety of you precious little ones like you.

Next we will discuss cleaning the dishes in Step 4.

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